How to Get the Most Out of An Online CME Conference
Author: Christine Zink, MD
Several changes in the world have put online continuing medical education at the forefront of learning. Although virtual education is not only necessary during the pandemic, its flexibility also allows a wide range of practitioners with varying budgets and time to access the information they need to give the best care to their patients. While many education programs differ, an online CME conference can offer multiple credit opportunities for those that would not normally attend due to limited budgets and time. So, here’s how you can make the most out of your online CME conference experience.
What Can You Expect From an Online Continuing Medication Education Conference?
Virtual conferences can be short or long; topics can be specific or broad; content can be tailored to nurse practitioners, physician assistants, or physicians; and the information can be free or offered at nominal fees. Individual online programs vary depending on what is chosen, and a person should set expectations accordingly.
Short CME topics offered through online material or podcasts can be done on the fly, even while exercising or driving. These types of programs are often free and can be done on a more regular basis. Also, it is common for these programs to meet state licensing requirements. Additionally, these programs present a wide variety of topics and can be completed by all different types of providers.
Longer or multi-day CME conferences frequently provide more expertise in speaker quality. Lectures through recorded webinars allow audience participation and question and answer sessions. Since they are recorded, they can be viewed later, which is much more convenient for the busy professional.
What Are the Benefits of Attending a Virtual CME Program?
Convenience: Online CME conferences are very convenient since many sessions can be listened to on the go. Virtual education is flexible, allowing people to participate when they have the time or while performing other daily life requirements.
Lower Cost: The essential benefit to healthcare clinicians who use virtual continuing medical education is reduced costs. A person does not have to pay for travel, including plane tickets, rental cars, hotels, and food. Some online programs are free or offered at nominal costs.
Meet State Licensure Requirements: Virtual continuing medical education is incredibly helpful for professionals who need to maintain state CME requirements, which have become more numerous with the changing healthcare climate that focuses more on quality. Clinicians need the option to finish these requirements while working in a busy practice and caring for their personal lives. With an online CME conference, there is ample opportunity to fulfill all types of credits.
Inclusivity: Virtual conferences are noted to be more inclusive and allow a person to interact with others they may not have interacted with had they traveled or not gone to a conference at all. Virtual conferences can also include people who do not have funding or time for travel. This more comprehensive variety of participants stimulates networking opportunities and provides a broad depth of discussion topics that might not have been available otherwise.
Access to Medical Experts: Yet another benefit to an online CME conference is the organizations’ ability to use renowned speakers and clinician-educators from across the U.S., rather than just a local area, to provide diverse knowledge to audiences.
How Do You Get the Most Out of an Online Continuing Medical Education Program?
It is vital to find an organization that offers clinician resources in one place. Pri-Med offers a wide range of topics, medical expertise, the option of short and long programs, and a mixture of free, low-cost, and regular cost options. The virtual format gives clinicians the ability to decide how to use their time in the most beneficial way. Moreover, often webinars are recorded so that the programs can be viewed another time.
To effectively stay involved with the medical community, it is also essential to attend live online webinars in comprehensive education. Interaction with other professionals and live question and answer sessions offer significant advances to clinical acumen. Live programs also provide networking opportunities to advance a clinician’s career, such as through social media. Many online CME programs utilize hashtags, social media event pages, and posts to engage with their audience. These provide an excellent opportunity to reach out and connect with other professionals. It is important to constructively use technology to the fullest in this virtual connectedness era.
If you’ve never attended a CME conference before, now is the perfect time to experience an online CME conference with Pri-Med. Explore our upcoming online CME programs to see what works for your needs.